Hoops: Three Things to Know During Offseason

Although the start of the regular season is still a while away, here are three things to know about the men's hoops program.

1. The exit of guards Willie Warren and Tommy Mason-Griffin and forward Tiny Gallon might actually have been a good thing—It's hard to say that the absence of guys who average 16.3, 14.1 and 10.3 points per game, respectively, is actually a good thing. However, there are reasons to believe that the vacancy of these guys might be beneficial because there will be less competing interests on the squad. OU head coach Jeff Capel said several times throughout the year that there were personal agendas among the team on who was the best player. For instance, Capel mentioned that when Warren was healthy and producing and the clear cut leader, there were three guys in the locker that were upset, and the same for after he suffered his injury and Mason-Griffin took over the reins as the leader.

2. Sooners were successful recruiting given the circumstances—Yes, the Sooners finished 13-18, their first losing season since the 1980-81 season when OU went 9-18 under head coach Billy Tubbs. And yes, the Sooners are under a pending NCAA investigation. But they still picked up a few solid recruits considering the situation. Among those are guards Calvin Newell and Carl Blair, as well as forwards Tyler Neal, Nick Thompson and C.J. Washington and center Abdul Sabour Ahmed. OU is also bringing in transfer forward Romero Osby from Mississippi State University. Although he will have to sit out the 2010-11 season, he is a quality addition to the roster. So the Sooners did some damage on the recruiting trail, which is a positive heading into next season.

3. The team will go as far as Cade Davis' leadership takes them—Davis, who will be the only senior on the team next year, must emerge as a leader in order for this team to have a successful year. He averaged just less than 10 points per game during the 2009-10 season, but he was very effective in other ways, especially on the defensive side of the ball. And that might be just what the Sooners need, a player that can inspire the team with the type of hustle and motivation they need defensively. Davis is the one player that has the experience and character to do just that.


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